Nate Silver’s book The Signal and the Noise contains an interesting bibliographic twist: he sometimes cites Kindle locations, not page numbers. Here is an example: footnote 42 in Chapter 8.
McGrayne, The Theory That Would Not Die, Kindle location 46.
Silver doesn’t do this for every book though he does sometimes say a book is the Kindle edition if he is giving the full citation. Is Silver on to a new trend? Will readers and scholars want Kindle locations?
I think we’re probably a long ways from this becoming standard. The problem is that it requires having all of your books in Kindle form. Ebooks are popular but I’m not sure how far people are willing to go to replace all of their older books with Kindle editions. (Particularly if you are dealing with more esoteric published material.) I could see this happening more for new books which are more likely to be purchased in Kindle form. Or perhaps we are headed for a world where everyone has Kindle access to all major books (a subscription service? An expanded Project Gutenberg?) on their phone, tablet, or computer and looking up a Kindle location becomes really easy.
Perhaps this won’t really matter until I see it in a student research paper…
Ars Technica is reporting a new class action lawsuit in the ebook market:
The essence of the claim is that these publishers [HarperCollins, Hachette Book Group, Macmillan, Penguin Group Inc., and Simon & Schuster Inc.], in coordination with Apple, conspired to nix the low price e-books that Amazon launched in 2007.…
The accusation is that the publishers and Apple fixed prices via two means. First, the publishers embraced an "agency model" arrangement with Apple in which Apple would act as an agent for the publishers, accepting their pricing and simply taking a cut of the proceeds. (Compare this to a model where a company agrees to "buy" each e-book at a set price, but it can then offer those e-books at any price it chooses. Amazon, in fact, was widely believed to be taking a loss on many e-books in order to encourage adoption of e-readers like the Kindle and e-books at the $9.99 price.)
Second, the publishers allegedly agreed not to sell books to any other online venue (like Amazon) at prices lower than those offered to Apple (a "most favored nation" agreement).
It’s far too early to tell whether the Hagens Berman litigation group will able to prove any of this. Each publisher had the incentive to raise their own prices, and that’s not illegal. The question thus becomes whether they colluded with Apple and/or the other publishers to do so. Only time (and very expensive discovery) will tell…